Reading’s new children’s company, Brighter Futures for Children, has made sure all primary school pupils in the borough have a place for September, with 87% (1,644 pupils) getting their first choice and only 1% (36 pupils) offered a divert option.

The number of applications for places at Reading’s primary schools has decreased for the third year running but more parents have been allocated their first choice for their children than in previous years.

A total of 2,110 places were available on National Offer Day (16 April ) in Reading primary schools and there were 1,882 applications. This contrasts with the number of secondary school places applied for this year, which left schools oversubscribed, although places were still found for students.

Brighter Futures for Children, which is owned by, but independent of, Reading Borough Council, has reduced the number of pupils offered none of their preferences significantly this year compared with the past three years. For those who couldn’t be offer a place, a divert school has been offered. All divert schools are considered to be within a reasonable distance of the child’s home address.

Late applications have still to be processed.

In addition, there were 159 pupils who needed an infant to junior school transfer. Reading has only two schools for which this transfer is necessary. 99.37% of Reading residents’ on-time applications received their first preference.  There were two pupils who were not offered a place at their preferred school but they are not attending an infant school. Late applications for these, too, still have to be processed.


2019 2018 2017 2016
Number of applicants 1882 2102 2254 2239
Percentage of 1st Preference offers 87.35% 84.02% 77.50% 78.61%
Percentage of Second Preference offers 6.75% 8.80% 10.10% 9.11%
Percentage of Third Preference offers 2.66% 2.47% 3.81% 4.20%
Percentage of Fourth Preference offers 0.85% 1.05% 2.17% 2.46%
Percentage of pupils offered a divert 1.19% 3.62% 6.20% 5.40%
Percentage of pupils allocated to other LA schools 11.16% 9.61% 9.79% 10.10%


2019 2018 2017 2016
Number of pupils offered first preference 1644 1767 1751 1760
Number of pupils offered second preference 127 185 228 204
Number of pupils offered third preference 50 52 87 94
Number of pupils offered fourth preference 16 22 49 55
Number of pupils offered a divert 36 76 139 121
Number of pupils allocated other LA Schools 210 202 222 226
Number of places in Reading schools allocated to children in another LA 43 30 37 37